I had the best day today (and I think my students did, too)! It's hard to keep the kids busy and engaged while the temperature is rising outside - so more than ever, it's time to put on the creative teacher hat. We've been studying biomes and ecosystems in science class. For their summative assessments, I had the kids use plasticine to make a 3D sculpture of an ecosystem in their assigned biomes. Students had to start out doing research on a graphic organizer I provided them with (click on the pictures to see an enlarged copy of the graphic organizer). After I had checked their graphic organizers, they were free to begin their sculpture. We used egg cartons for the base. Students had to show plant and animal life in the ecosystem, and relate it to the food chain and energy pyramid. They also had to label all elements in their sculptures. Let me tell you - I had no idea how great this activity would be. The students LOVED it! They were so into it - and it kept a class full of 12 and 13 year-olds quiet, busy, and on task for three days! They even wanted to work through their lunches! The students presented their projects today. I had them set their sculpture up under the ELMO so the whole class could see it, and then they had to orally present their sculpture, focussing on the scientific details they researched. How great are these projects?!?
Presenting over the ELMO.
The graphic organizer.
So, have I convinced you to raid the primary cupboards and find the plasticine? It's not just for the little ones - trust me! Best.Project.Ever.